Nutmeg Oil offers 'a whole new world'
"There is a store like this in Des Moines, where I'm living now," Espe said. "If you want to improve your diet and open a whole new world of meal choices, the only thing stopping you is your imagination when you shop in a store like this."
The store at 25 Main St. was opened recently by Maureen Kenny. It shares the remodeled 2 Bank Street building and its tin ceiling and hardwood floors provide a welcoming ambiance while browsing the gourmet oils, balsamic vinegars and organic condiments.
"I have extended family members who have similar stores in the West," said Kenny, a retired Wells Fargo bank official. "I've always had a passion for food and was always the person creating the gift baskets at the bank."
Nutmeg Olive Oil Company is a certified ultra-premium store: It carries imported olive oils and balsamic vinegars that are rotated out of sales stock when new presses come in.
The business is not a franchise. Product is ordered from Veronica Foods of California, which sources small groves so it controls the product, Kenny said.
"Right now I have oils from the Southern Hemisphere -- Australia, Chile, Peru -- because the olives there are picked and crushed starting in April and May," Kenny said. "Nothing in the store in the extra virgin olive oil category is more than six months old. The dates on the bottles are crush dates."
Freshness is the key to extra virgin olive oil's health benefits, she explained. Olives picked green and crushed within three hours of being processed produce the best product, Kenny said.
She also carries Registered Dietician Mary Flynn and Nancy Vede Ban's book "The Pink Ribbon Diet." Flynn recently spoke on NPR about the health benefits of extra virgin olive oil.
Kenny has in stock: six extra virgin olive oils on tap; 13 dark balsamic vinegars, 10 light balsamic vinegars, 11 flavored and three fused balsamics as well as nut oils, truffle oils, and mixes of dark balsamics with flavored olive oils. Prices range from $9 to $30.
Sampling a honey-base olive oil with serrano chilies and then a blackberry ginger balsamic vinegar, Espe mused on each.
"I like a lot of salads and vegetables and it takes just a little trickle of something like this over them," Espe said. "Several vinegars will go over ice cream. They have a lot less sugar and that's something I look for."
Nutmeg Olive Oil Company, 25 Main St., New Milford is open Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday and Friday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. With holiday hours extended. Call 860-354-7300. Gift baskets and corporate baskets available.